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Journal of Chinese Integrative Medicine ›› 2009, Vol. 7 ›› Issue (2): 121-124.doi: 10.3736/jcim20090205

• Original Experimental Research • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Effects of a formula of components from Shengmai Powder on glucocorticoid receptor in rats after thermal injury

 Xiang Lu, Bin-bin Cheng , Chang-quan Ling , Xiao-qiang Yue , Bai Li   

  1. Department of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Changhai Hospital, Second Military Medical University, Shanghai 200433, China
  • Received:2008-08-07 Accepted:2008-10-13 Online:2009-02-20 Published:2009-02-15


To investigate the effects of a formula of components from Shengmai Powder, a compound traditional Chinese herbal medicine, on glucocorticoid receptor (GR) in rats after thermal injury.

A total of 32 male SD rats were randomly assigned into normal control group, untreated group, ginsenosides group and components group, with 8 rats in each group. Rats in the normal control group were intragastrically administered with normal saline (NS) at room temperature once daily. Rats in the untreated group were treated with NS before thermal injury, and rats in the components group and ginsenosides group were once daily treated with a mixture of aqueous extracts of Ophiopogonis Japoni, Fructus schizandrae Chinensis and ginsenosides and ginsenosides respectively. Rats were administered for one week. After the last administration, rats in the untreated group and treated groups underwent thermal injury for one hour, and then were sacrificed immediately by decapitation. Blood serum was collected, and the serum corticosterone (CS) and adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) levels were determined with enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and radioimmunoassay (RIA) respectively. The liver, lung and kidney homogenates were used to determine the GR binding capacity by radioligand receptor binding assay. The results were analyzed by one point analysis.

GR binding capacities in liver, lung and kidney cytosols in the untreated group were obviously lower than those in the normal control group (P<0.01). The GR binding capacities in the liver and lung cytosols in the components group and the ginsenosides group were significantly higher than those in the untreated group (P<0.01), but no significant difference was found in kidney cytosol. Compared with the ginsenosides group, GR binding capacity in liver cytosol in the components group was increased (P<0.01), but there were no noticeable differences when compared with the GR binding capacities in lung and kidney cytosols. Serum CS and ACTH levels of the normal rats were (66±16) μg/L and (59±18) ng/L respectively. There were significant differences in CS and ACTH levels between the normal control group and the other groups (P<0.01), in which the serum CS and ACTH levels were (113±33) μg/L and (125±20) ng/L, (123±26) μg/L and (110±30) ng/L and (118±17) μg/L and (115±35) ng/L respectively. But there was no significant difference between the untreated group and the other treated groups.

The formula of components from Shengmai Powder can enhance the effect of ginsenosides in up-regulating GR in rats after thermal injury.

Key words: Shengmai powder, Component formula, Qinsenosides, Thermal injury, Glucocorticoid receptor, Rats

Table 1

The changes of GR binding capacities for live, lung and kidney cytosols in rats (x±s, fmol/mg)"

Group n R0
Liver Lung Kidney
Normal control 8 308±44 226±22 124±17
Untreated 8 226±42** 87±9** 75±14**
Ginsenosides 8 288±27△△▲▲ 104±20**△△ 73±11**
Components 8 360±29△△ 130±13**△△ 83±9**

Table 2

The changes of CS and ACTH concentrations in serum in rats (x±s)"

Group n CS (μg/L) ACTH (ng/L)
Normal control 8 66±16 59±18
Untreated 8 113±33** 125±20**
Ginsenosides 8 118±17** 115±35**
Components 8 123±26** 110±30**
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